Trails of India
Mountain biking is way different than normally riding on a plain road. It is both physically and mentally challenging to ride on the mountains. One needs years of experience to get their biking instincts right before they can confidently go for a ride on the mountains. There is, obviously, a whole different set of kit for mountain riding. The 4 basic kit (helmet, gloves, jacket and boots) are all present but are little different than the normal riding kit which is used for roads.
The road biking kit mainly consists of 4 main parts- the helmet, jacket, gloves and boots. The helmet should always be inspected properly before it is to be purchased and it is preferable that the helmet is bought from a well-known brand to be sure of its quality. The jacket is either made of synthetic material or of leather. Protective padding is also available for the jackets or protective vests. The leather is mostly preferred by people when it comes to the jacket and the gloves since they last long and also help you to get that biker look! But, things are a bit different when it comes to the mountain biking clothing and mountain biking shoes and so, here in this article, we will tell you the difference between the kit of mountain biking and normal road biking.
Helmets are quite important when it comes to biking. Always be sure that you buy the right helmet for yourself. For mountain biking, always go for helmets which are made of carbon fibre as they are much more resistant and lightweight. The visors should be made of polycarbonate as they offer maximum visibility. One can even opt for double screening system on helmets which will help them to adjust to the light in the surrounding, say- while entering or exiting a tunnel. It is also very important to look for other important features as well- whether the helmet has quick release belts or not, and emergency release system (in case of an emergency). A kit is also preferred that one purchases a helmet which has reflectors so that they are visible to other drivers or riders if they are riding in the dark or in almost zero visibility.
The jackets have to well-padded to keep the rider warm and safe. It is always preferred to get an insulated jacket instead of heavily padded jackets since it will enable you to make more bodily movements. The jackets with insulators are a bit more expensive than normal jackets with protective padding and for obvious reasons. There are even options to make your own DIY insulators for your jackets from streaming YouTube videos but, honestly, it is not advisable unless you know what you doing! Mountain biking jackets should also be waterproof to protect the rider from getting wet from rain or snow and thus, preventing him or her from catching a cold.
Gloves with thick padding are mostly used by mountain bikers. You need to keep your fingers since you don’t want them to go numb while riding your bike. Use thick materials for your gloves so that it keeps it protected from any kind of impact and most importantly, from cold.
Mountain bike shoes or boots have to be more heavy duty than your normal road biking shoes or boots. One needs proper grip and protection when they are riding on mountain roads. Leather boots are preferred by many riders but boots made of synthetic materials and fibres are also getting very popular. Rubber boots are also preferable. In the end, what matters are three things when it comes to buying boots for your mountain biking kit- Does it fit fine? Does it give me a proper grip on the surface? Does it keep my feet warm and protected? If your answer to all these questions while buying a boot is yes, then you are good to go!
There are other important things which one has to always keep in mind while riding on mountain roads. Always carry extra fuel in some container and never forget to carry some canned food and warm water in your thermos bottle. Always pay attention to your surroundings and be extra attentive when you are riding in the dark or at a very bad visibility. Till then keep riding and be safe!